December 27, 2013

Why I love the NC Archives

I love libraries. There, I said it. I'm officially a Class A geek. I worked my way through college in a library and my first job out of college was with a library on a military base. I considered a Master's degree in library science but my mother talked me out of it. She thought of libraries as places where you could get the latest trashy novel.

Aside from the usual reasons to love a library...the books, the learning, blah, blah, blab...I just find something reverent about a library. Something about the atmosphere, the smell. It's almost like a wonderland. I'd rather be lost in a library than Willie Wonka's chocolate factory. Truly.

I use the term "library" loosely to cover everything from your standard public library to a document repository to an archive facility. 

But my very favorite library of all time is the North Carolina ArchivesI'm in complete awe. Always have been since I first visited the Archives when I was about 14 years old for a school project.  I'm sure it has a lot to do with my fascination with history and genealogy, but it's more than just that.

I live only about 10 miles from the NC Archives. How many genealogists would love to be able to say they lived within shouting distance of their state archives? WooHoo for me! 

Here's a few of the things I particularly appreciate about the NC Archives:

  • I love their blog, A History for all People. It's real and down to earth. Not a bunch of jargon or posts that are irrelevant. 
  • The You Tube channel is very cool.
  • The digital collection truly is "history at your fingertips".
  • They are open on Saturdays so I can geek out on my day off. 
  • Their staff answers my email inquiries. That makes me very happy.
  • Their copy charges are reasonable. Still just $.10 a page.
  • They are within spitting distance of my favorite museums. When the archives closes for the day on Saturday, I can just mosey on over the NC Museum of History to continue my geek-fest.
  • They are in the same building as the State Library. Another whole opportunity to wallow in my library fetish. 
  • I donated my daddy's war time letters to the NC Archives. Another reason to feel I belong there. 
There was a time I felt a little intimidated by the NC Archives. Now I feel right at home.

One last thing...anyone who thinks libraries are obsolete should be imprisoned. Just sayin'. After all, even prisons have libraries. Ha!  The joke's on them!

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